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Stride Treglown's Salford Uni's £32m arts block finally to be retendered

A £32 million Salford University arts building by Stride Treglown is to be retendered to a select group of contractors, more than a year after six bidders competed for the scheme

Contractors have been called to a meeting tomorrow (15 January) with the university, where they will be told of a new two-stage tender process and new tender documents will be issued.

Last year the Architects’ Journal’s sister publication CN revealed that Bam Construct, Laing O’Rourke, Lend Lease, Shepherd Construction, Vinci and Willmott Dixon were in the running for the delayed project.

Sources told CN last year that Bam Construct was favourite for the scheme, however it was then revealed that a decision on the preferred bidder for the scheme had been delayed, more than a year after the original OJEU notice valuing the scheme at between £32m and £38m was published in the summer of 2011.

The original tender process was then scrapped, after a review of the scheme to reflect the university’s amalgamation of the School of Art & Design with the School of Media, Music & Performance.

A Salford University spokeswoman said: “We will issue revised tender documents next week and aim to appoint a main contractor by April.’ She confirmed the shortlisted contractors would be those invited to tender the scheme a second time.

The original design for the Salford arts block included works for a seven-storey arts building with recording studios, flexible theatre, performance rooms and cafe, as well as a new-build art and design workshop and redevelopment of open space around the building and the university square.

Construction is expected to take two years on the Salford scheme. It was designed by architect Stride Treglown and structural engineer Gifford and was granted planning permission in August.

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